The Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health Center for Work, Health, & Well-being is a NIOSH Total Worker Health? Center of Excellence. Its mission is to protect and promote the safety, health, and well-being of workers through integrated workplace policies, programs, and practices that foster safe and healthy conditions of work. Building on its systems-level conceptual model centered on the conditions of work, the Center has expanded this model to include employment & labor patterns and the social/political/economic environment. The Center?s three unifying themes, informed by our conceptual model, provide a framework for setting priorities to ensure that our research and dissemination efforts make a difference in improving the conditions of work.
The mission of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Center for Workers’ Compensation Studies (CWCS) is to maximize the use of workers’ compensation (WC) claims data and systems to improve workplace safety and health through partnerships. This poster presentation will describe recent and ongoing CWCS surveillance and research studies to achieve several key goals (see https://www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/workercomp/cwcs/publications.html).
This mixed-methods case study analysis investigates employees? perceptions of their organization?s COVID-19 response, and seeks to examine how these perceptions relate to the organization?s safety culture. Qualitative and quantitative archival survey data collected from one large freight-carrying railroad with sites across the U.S. was utilized to conduct analyses. The top five themes extracted from a bottom-up qualitative analysis of employees? open-ended responses about their organization?s COVID-19 response are presented and discussed (n = 196). Initial quantitative analyses that examine these responses in relation to employees? perceptions of their organization?s safety culture suggest that an organization?s existing safety culture may relate to its handling of the pandemic; a finding that bolsters existing literature on the many benefits of a strong organizational safety culture. Additional analyses are currently being conducted to further explore how the top five themes that emerged from open-ended comments relate to more-specific indicators of safety culture. In this way, we may be able to more finely-tune the practical implications of this work.
The NIOSH Agriculture, Forestry, and Fishing Program (AgFF) provides leadership and coordination between intra- and extramural efforts nationwide to prevent work-related injuries and illnesses among the nation?s agricultural, forestry, and fishing workers (AgFF). AgFF workers are exposed to high-risk, unpredictable environments, as well as long hours and shift work. Likewise, the majority of AgFF workers are in non-standard work arrangements, and unlike many sectors, most AgFF workers are specifically exempted in many regulatory policies regarding minimum wage, overtime, maximum hours per shift, child labor, and health and safety enforcement. This poster will highlight the NIOSH AgFF Program?s recent and future research, training, and outreach initiatives related to mental health and stress, sleep deprivation and fatigue, aging, workplace violence, non-standard work arrangements, and health equity in order to improve the overall health of all AgFF workers.
Burnout has been a major concern for all workers, but may be particularly concerning and prevalent for healthcare workers. Therefore, we examined healthcare workers before and during the Covid-19 pandemic in order to understand the extent to which the resources that workers had prior to the pandemic would help to buffer the negative impact of Covid stressors on worker health outcomes.
The purpose of this project was to evaluate the barriers and facilitators of long-term sustainability of a HWPP during a period of significant organizational transition. Analysis of interviews with individuals closely involved with the project were qualitatively analyzed using grounded theory methods and thematic analysis. Results from the interviews showed universal support for the continuation of the existing HWPP, but significant concerns over the sustainability of the project due to lack of formalized policy and organizational resources. Practical implications for current and future HWPP include formalizing policy across multiple sites, enhancing training and recognition for all stakeholders, and minimizing project turnover.
Our presentation conceptualizes pain as an explanatory mechanism for the relationship between physical job demands and intentions to turnover (ITO), using the fear-avoidance (FA) model as the theoretical framework. Data from a multi-wave study on work capacity and aging, which included 360 participants recruited from five manufacturing organizations in the northeastern U.S., were analyzed using the SPSS PROCESS macro (model 4) to estimate direct and indirect effects, while controlling for various covariates. Our results indicated that high physical job demands were significantly related to increased perceptions of pain; high perceptions of pain and high physical job demands were significantly related to higher ITO; and the relationship between physical job demands and ITO was partially mediated by perceptions of pain. Collectively, these results indicate that ITO is a potential outcome of physical job demands, and that pain may partially explain this relationship. As such, in order to reduce instances of ITO, research as well as organizations that require employees to engage in physically demanding work should focus on uncovering interventions that may reduce an employee?s associated experience of pain.
In this study conducted in a mixed population of non-clinical and clinical healthcare staff, we examined the association of emotional exhaustion-a dimension of burnout-with understudied work environment exposures including organizational-level policies and practices as well as job-level hazardous work conditions, using a novel mediation analysis approach proposed by Valerie and VanderWeele. We found that job safety, emotional labor, psychological demands, physical demands, job strain, assault and negative acts (bullying) were positively associated with emotional exhaustion while organizational support for safety was negatively associated. Job hazards served as both mediator and moderator in the association between organizational support for safety and emotional exhaustion. These findings suggest that policies for organizational commitment to employee safety should be efficiently applied to ensure reduction of job hazards in order to improve burnout. Future longitudinal studies are needed to further examine this association.
The occupational stress inherent in firefighting poses both physiological and psychological risks to firefighters that have been found to possess a reciprocal nature. That is, the nature of these relationships in terms of indicator and impact are elusive, especially as it relates to sleep health (e.g., quality, quantity, hygiene, etc.) as a specific physiological risk and burnout as a specific psychological risk. A series of mediation models were assessed to examine the reciprocal relationships between occupational stress, burnout, and sleep health in a sample of 161 career firefighters. The mediation models confirmed reciprocity among the variables in so much that relationships were best described by the underlying mechanism at work. Comprehensive assessments of both subjective and objective markers of sleep health should be incorporated into firefighter research to supplement behavioral health assessments and interventions, especially related to burnout and occupational stress.
Informed by person-environment fit theory, this cross-sectional study examined the effects of office design (open-plan vs. enclosed offices) and organizational practices (control, voice) on the job attitudes and well-being of 100 autistic employees. Results indicated that distractions were higher and environmental satisfaction, affective commitment were lower for autistic employees in an open plan office setting than those in enclosed office spaces. Perceived control and voice had significant relationships with attitudinal and well-being outcomes. The practical implications for employers include giving autistic employees the ability to reduce open-plan obstacles in ways they see fit, while also championing organizational practices to increase fit.